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MEAC Notebook

December 20, 2002 Conference Notes No Comments



Mid-Eastern Conference Notebook

by Amanda M. Breedlove

Bethune-Cookman:

The Bethune-Cookman Wildcats have experienced a rough start to their season, dropping their record to 1-4(1-0) after a 81-55 loss at Louisiana-Lafayette on December 18. Bethune-Cookman’s leading scorer, Richard Toussaint, (averaging 20 points per game) poured in 22 points in the game, but the Wildcats could not overcome the Cajuns’ 53.6 shooting percentage and 69% second-half shooting. The Wildcats’ only win of the season came from their victory at conference opponent Florida A&M. They won that game 71-69 at Florida A&M on December 3 thanks to Toussaint’s lay-up with 2.1 seconds to play. Bethune-Cookman will now have a 10-day break before its next game, which is December 28 at the University of Florida in Gainesville.

Coppin State:

The Coppin State Eagles are fighting to turn their season around early after losing six out of their first seven games. In their most recent game on December 14, the Eagles faced the No.7 Oklahoma Sooners. The Sooners mounted a 69-47 win with the high-scoring contributions of Hollis Price and Quannas White, who scored 22 points and 13 points in the game, respectively. The Eagles, who shot only 37.5% from the field during the first half, fall to 1-6 on the season. Coppin State’s first win of the season came on December 8 at home against conference rival Morgan State. The team was propelled to a 73-59 victory by junior Jimmy Boykin’s 23-point performance, giving it a 1-0 MEAC record. The Eagles will travel to Lawrenceville, New Jersey for their next game, a match-up against Rider University on December 21.

Delaware State:

The Hornets, now 2-5 on the season, played two games in a three-day span in the past week, winning 70-63 at home over Wagner College on December 14 and losing at Creighton, 68-48 on December 16. Delaware State is currently in the middle of a long break, and will not play another game until it visits Rutgers on December 28.

Florida A&M:

Beginning their season by playing some of the top-ranked teams in the country, the Florida A&M Rattlers are off to a good start. Though starting with two straight losses and notching a 71-69 loss in their first conference game to Bethune-Cookman on December 3, the Rattlers have since won their last two. The team, now with an even 3-3 record, beat Central Florida 55-54 on December 7 before defeating Alabama A&M 91-89 on December 16. Florida A&M will continue its tough schedule over the Christmas holiday as it faces No. 5 Oregon on December 20 and No. 13 Florida on December 30. Six-foot-three junior guard Terrence Woods paces the Rattlers with an average of 19.6 points per game and an 84.8% average at the free-throw line.

Hampton:

Hampton University continues to be a bright spot in the MEAC as the defending back-to-back conference champs blast open the season undefeated. The Pirates are 4-0 as they head into tonight’s home game against Virginia Commonwealth, after knocking off Norfolk State 72-62 on December 7. Mackel Purvis has scored an average of 16.5 points per game this year to lead the team in scoring, followed closely by Barry Hairston, who is averaging 16 points per game. Hampton opens conference play on January 4 at Maryland-Eastern Shore.

Howard:

The Bison are 1-5 after dropping their fourth-straight game. They lost 61-58 at American University on December 9 despite Kyle Williams’ 23-point contribution. Howard’s lone win came against Radford early in the season on November 26, a 62-58 victory. The Bison will face Georgetown on December 20 and then take eight days off before meeting Oral Roberts University on December 29.

Maryland-Eastern Shore:

In the latest loss in a season of struggle for the Fighting Hawks,Maryland-Eastern Shore has yet to claim a win this year and is sitting low at 0-7. The Fighting Hawks lost to Robert Morris 93-74 on December 18 in their first home game since November 30. These losses came despite the sparkling performance of Maryland-Eastern Shore’s Tee Trotter, a junior guard who with 21.6 points per game is the team’s leading scorer. Trotter scored a team-high 26 points in a loss to Robert Morris this week and has scored more than 30 points in a game twice already this season. The Fighting Hawks will look for their first win against Hartford on December 28.

Morgan State:

The Morgan State Bears are looking at a lackluster season with a four-game losing streak and only one win in eight games. In the Bears’ most recent performance, they suffered an embarassing 72-46 loss at Canisius on December 17. Only three days before, Morgan State also lost to Virginia Tech 71-64. The Bears play at William & Mary on December 22.

North Carolina A&T:

In what could easily be called their most exciting and toughest games of the season, the NC A&T Aggies faced the then No.3 Duke Blue Devils on December 17.The undefeated Blue Devils (6-0) forced 28 turnovers from the Aggies on the way to an easy 91-57 win. The Aggies, now 1-5, did however have a solid performance from rookie guard Steven Koger, who scored a team-high 16 points in the loss. North Carolina A&T will face another Atlantic Coast Conference school in its next game, a December 28 match-up against Wake Forest University. The Aggies begin Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference play on January 4 against Coppin State.

Norfolk State:

The Norfolk State University Spartans follow suit with most of the conference, posting a meager 1-5 record. The last game the Spartans played, on December 16, was an embarassing 84-48 rout at the hands of Georgetown. The Spartans’ Derrick Smith, who is averaging 14.0 points per game this season, scored a game-high 23 points in the loss. Georgetown’s Brandan Bowman, a freshman, led his team with 18 points in the game. The Spartans will play UNC-Greensboro on December 21 and Virginia Military Institute on December 28.

South Carolina State:

Moses Malone, Jr., was named the MEAC Player of the Week and has led the Bulldogs in scoring in their last five games. The team, however, is lagging, earning a 1-5 record and dropping its last two. On December 18, South Carolina State was hung out to dry by Wake Forest in a 100-57 loss. The Bulldogs will return to action on December 21 at The Citadel.

     

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